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90

Universal acclaim - based on 30 Critics What's this?

User Score
8.7

Universal acclaim- based on 164 Ratings

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  • Summary: Condemned to six years in prison, Malik El Djebena cannot read or write. Arriving at the jail entirely alone, he appears younger and more fragile than the other convicts. He is 19 years old. Cornered by the leader of the Corsican gang who rules the prison, he is given a number of "missions"Condemned to six years in prison, Malik El Djebena cannot read or write. Arriving at the jail entirely alone, he appears younger and more fragile than the other convicts. He is 19 years old. Cornered by the leader of the Corsican gang who rules the prison, he is given a number of "missions" to carry out, toughening him up and gaining the gang leader's confidence in the process. But Malik is brave and a fast learner, daring to secretly develop his own plans. (Sony Pictures Classics) Expand
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Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 30
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 30
  3. Negative: 0 out of 30
  1. Why do we care? Because never before have the steps to thugdom, as depressing as that destination may be, been so rigorously detailed, neither romanticized nor negated. Don’t miss.
  2. 100
    It's a highly original film made in a familiar context, and an exciting moviegoing experience you shouldn't miss.
  3. 100
    To borrow a marketing phrase from another, very different film, A Prophet really is the movie that reminds you why you love the movies. Especially movies like this one.
  4. 88
    Audiard delivers on and exceeds the promise he evinced in that earlier film, drawing viewers into the densely layered, ruthless ecology of a French prison and, against all odds, making them not mind staying there awhile.
  5. A Prophet pushes its protagonist into circumstances he did not choose but in which he watches and learns and kills and eventually becomes all he can be, albeit criminally. Certainly Muslims living in France have embraced the movie and Malik, played by Rahim
  6. Reviewed by: Peter Brunette
    80
    What's most immediately remarkable about the film is the raw intensity of its hyper-realistic encounters, hugely enhanced by the superb acting of newcomer Rahim.
  7. Reviewed by: Claudia Puig
    63
    A compelling piece of naturalistic filmmaking, claustrophobic and thought-provoking.

See all 30 Critic Reviews

Score distribution:
  1. Positive: 27 out of 28
  2. Negative: 0 out of 28
  1. Nov 23, 2010
    10
    What is really great about this movie, is the simplicity of it. An Arabian man who is sentenced to six years in prison soon is confronted by aWhat is really great about this movie, is the simplicity of it. An Arabian man who is sentenced to six years in prison soon is confronted by a Corsican gang who gives him several tasks to do, soon becoming a ruthless gang member, and he can't even read or write.There is this sense of immense greatness toward Malik who is only 19 years old and seems like the only nice guy who won't shoot an inmate. And the Corsican gang seems to be his only refuge, even if he doesn't like it. The plot is simply told, not through verbal communication, but in several instances where the filmakers step you outside the movie and try to tell you, "This is Malik now." He soon becomes productive, and ruthless. He slowly rebuilds his life. A perfect crime drama that has things anybody could ask for in one. Expand
  2. Sep 2, 2010
    10
    "A Prophet" is a completely engrossing experience that plays out like a genre film, colliding gangster politics and prison society for a"A Prophet" is a completely engrossing experience that plays out like a genre film, colliding gangster politics and prison society for a satisfying thriller. However, what really gives the film its drive is the grit and social realism (two aspects rarely afforded by genre) packed into every scene, giving a completely unique crime drama. Unfortunately, the fact that it is French allowed it to fly completely under the American radar - though I doubt it will ever be as iconic or influential, I hope time will allow the movie to takes its rightful place along the ranks of "The Godfather" and "Goodfellas". Expand
  3. j30
    Jan 26, 2012
    10
    The gritty, French crime drama A Prophet is irresistible. It almost feels like a Martin Scorsese picture with all the underlying themesThe gritty, French crime drama A Prophet is irresistible. It almost feels like a Martin Scorsese picture with all the underlying themes (particularly racism and social class). Expand
  4. Sep 28, 2010
    9
    Outstanding. A Prophet captivated me from beginning to end. It juxtaposes moments of surreal majesty, with gritty realism to spectacular effect.
  5. May 21, 2012
    9
    Un film choc qui peut aussi bien se voir comme un documentaire viscéral sur la vie dans les prisons françaises (enUn film choc qui peut aussi bien se voir comme un documentaire viscéral sur la vie dans les prisons françaises (en tout cas, les moins fréquentables) qu'un bon polar, avec en fond une histoire mafieuse se déroulant au sein même de l'établissement. On aurait bien pu se désintéresser du sujet assez rapidement, avec sa durée de 2h24, mais il n'en est rien, le film nous captivant de bout en bout. Et cela grâce à une impeccable mise en scène (donnant une atmsophère prenante à l'ensemble, une puissance à la plupart des scènes...), à un casting de qualité (avec en tête Tahar Rahim et Niels Arestrup), et à une bande son hypnotisante (qui amplifie le côté accrocheur du film). Bref, il n'y a rien à dire d'autres sur Un Prophète, chef-d'oeuvre du cinéma français que l'on doit à un réalisateur de génie : Jacques Audiard! Expand
  6. Feb 12, 2011
    9
    A Prophet is about a young Arab man sent to a French prison where he became a drug kingpin. Malik is Arabian (Muslim), most of his inmates areA Prophet is about a young Arab man sent to a French prison where he became a drug kingpin. Malik is Arabian (Muslim), most of his inmates are Corsicans so there was a big separation. Malik is known for siding with the enemies. He works for the Corsicans but at the same time bond with the Muslims. Malik is illiterate and has no support outside of prison so his life in jail is all he has.
    It seems as though Malik has a struggle of character once every five minutes of the film. If he's now doubting his decisions, he's getting his ass kicked by a Corsican. Director Jacques Audiard has done a fine job of creating this complicated yet fragile character that even if you can't understand him, you side with him. The film also demonstrates how a prison might make you do things that you'd never imagined. Filled with violence and gory details, finely crafted, and beautifully cinematographed, A Prophet is one of the best that the French film industry has to offer. (not to mention impressive performances out of the cast)
    Expand
  7. QuincyH
    Feb 27, 2010
    5
    I think it should read, "Malik El Djebena cannot read NOR write". I love the concept of this website, I just want to keep your guys on your I think it should read, "Malik El Djebena cannot read NOR write". I love the concept of this website, I just want to keep your guys on your editing toes. Thanks for the service. Expand

See all 28 User Reviews

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